Meaning of Life 42

These thoughts are the result of a conversation with a (wishing-to-remain-anonymous-for-this-but-very-happy-to-let-me-publish-the-essence-of-the-conversation) person.

We all know that the Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything is 42.

We also know that God has a tendency to hide the meaning of life from us – it is certainly not so straight forward that all people easily agree about it.

So does God hide “42” when it appears in the Bible?

The obvious example of 42 is the generations from Abraham to Christ in Matthew 1:1-17: “all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the deportation to Babylon, fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the Messiah, fourteen generations”. Making 42.

Well, of course, that is false.

The first two are correct. But from Jechoniah to Jesus, the Messiah is…. count them… 13. Making 41.

We also know about time travel:

An easy way to make money by copyrighting things, then suing the companies who originally copyrighted the thing in the first place.

The Encyclopedia Galactica copied many of its excerpts from the back of cereal boxes adding footnotes so the companies couldn’t sue them. It is ironic that due to time travel the Encyclopedia Galactica went back into time and wrote the passages before the cereal companies, and then went on to sue them for copyright infringement.

So Douglas Adams himself gives the clue as to how God hid 42 from us in the Bible – going back in time to alter the actual number of generations, while Matthew continued to have the original information.

Others (eg PDF) have far more complicated theories – differentiating “Jesus” from “the Messiah”! This approach leads to:

There are some interesting fact concerning the number 42:
1. The angle at which light reflects off water to create a rainbow is 42 degrees. [Me: degrees, of course are a completely arbitrary human construct]
2. The city of Jerusalem covers an area of 42 square miles. [Me: miles are… well you know, see (1) above]
3. The natural vibration frequency of human DNA [Me: I have no idea what this means!]

Alternative theories are: Matthew cannot count. Or, if you have the Bible as word-for-word inspired/dictated by God: God cannot count.

Image source

If you appreciated this post, there are different ways to keep in touch with the community around this website: like the facebook page, follow twitter, use the RSS feed,…

Similar Posts: